You remember Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war activist. Well, she was scheduled to appear April 9 at St. John the Evangelist Church hall in Scranton to speak with Pax Christi of Northeastern Pennsylvania. That is, until the Diocese of Scranton got wind of it. Then…not so much.
Never one to shy away from publicity, Sheehan, a former Catholic, now has plenty to say about the Church because of it. And as you can imagine, she’s not being so nice. According to published reports she’s calling the Church not truly pro-life and hypocritical.
The Diocese of Scranton issued this statement:
The March 11 issue of The Catholic Light contained a notice about an upcoming appearance by anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who was scheduled to speak at St. John Hall in Scranton on April 9.
This notice was published in error. Neither Cardinal Justin Rigali, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Scranton, nor Bishop-elect Joseph C. Bambera had authorized the use of a Diocesan or parish facility to host this speaker. Although Mrs. Sheehan is well known for her anti-war stance against the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq , she also supports positions that are contrary to Church teaching regarding life and marriage issues.
Therefore, her appearance at St. John Hall has been cancelled and she will not be allowed to speak at any other Diocesan or parish facility.
And now it’s like the diocese lit the Sheehan fuse because now she’s attacking the Church calling it not really pro-life, hypocritical and not caring about people who have already been born.
The Standard Speaker reports:
She said this is the first time a diocese has banned her from speaking at a Catholic venue.
She has received awards from a Catholic organization because of her anti-war views and spoke inside a Catholic church in Columbus, Ohio, and at a Catholic church hall in Cleveland, Ohio, she said.
“Those bishops didn’t make a big deal about it,” she said.
Sheehan, a former Catholic parish youth minister, said she left the church years ago because of its willingness to cover up sexual abuse by priests.
“Every time the church does something like this, it enrages me because first of all I feel I’ve dedicated my life to peace,” she said. “I don’t go to my events and say, ‘I’m for a woman’s right to choose’ or ‘I’m for marriage equality.’ That’s not what I speak about. I speak about ending these unjust wars that killed my son.”
The church has failed to “take a lead role in demanding the U.S. end its military misadventures around the world,” which would be a pro-life position, she said.
“Whenever they do something like this, they just call more attention to the hypocrisy of their positions,” she said. “To me, it’s more like they want to protect the unborn than they want to protect the people who are already born.”
So let me get this straight. She’s telling a newspaper that she’s for a woman’s right to choose and gay marriage to explain that she never talks about a woman’s right to choose and her support of gay marriage. That make sense to anyone?
I’m sure we’ll hear more about this from Ms. Sheehan. I’m sure that if she thinks there’s publicity to be had she’ll show up at Cardinal Rigali’s office like she did near Dick Cheney’s house a few months ago.